fighting spam and scams on the Internet
"419" Scam – Advance Fee / Fake Lottery Scam
The so-called "419" scam is a type of fraud dominated by criminals from Nigeria and other countries in Africa. Victims of the scam are promised a large amount of money, such as a lottery prize, inheritance, money sitting in some bank account, etc.
Victims never receive this non-existent fortune but are tricked into sending their money to the criminals, who remain anonymous. They hide their real identity and location by using fake names and fake postal addresses as well as communicating via anonymous free email accounts and mobile phones.
Keep in mind that scammers DO NOT use their real names when defrauding people.
The criminals either abuse names of real people or companies or invent names or addresses.
Any real people or companies mentioned below have NO CONNECTION to the scammers!
Read more about such scams here or in our 419 FAQ. Use the Scam-O-Matic to verify suspect emails.
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Some comments by the Scam-O-Matic about the following email:
- This email uses a separate reply address that is different from the sender address. Spammers use this to get replies even when the original spam sending accounts have been shut down. Also, sometimes the sender addresses are legitimate looking but fake and only the reply address is actually an email account controlled by the scammers.
- The following phrases in this message should put you on alert:
- "million us dollars" (they want you to be blinded by the prospect of quick money, but the only money that ever changes hands in 419 scams is from you to the criminals)
- "urgent assistance" (scammers rush victims so they don't have time to think properly)
- This email message is a 419 scam. Please see our 419 FAQ for more details on such scams.
Fraud email example:
From: Zaina Murad Falah <email@example.com>
Reply-To: Zaina Murad Falah <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Wed, 10 Dec 2014 04:04:24 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: Greetings to you and your family today,
Â Dearest friend,
Greetings to you and your family today,I am Mr Zainal Murad Falah. the Head of file Department in BANK OF AFRICA PLC.I hoped that you will not expose or betray this trust, and confidence that I am about to repose on you for the mutual benefits of our both families.I have a very lucrative Business proposal worth of $15, 000.000.00 [Fifteen million, United States dollars)
An Iraqi named Hamadi Hashem a business man made a fixed deposit of USD$15 million US dollars . Upon maturity several notices was sent to him, even during the war,some years ago (2003). Again after the war another notification was sent and still no response came from him. it has been found out that Hamadi Hashem and his family had been killed during the war in bomb blast that hit their home at Mukaradeeb where his personal oil well was. I am prepared to split the funds with you 50%:50%.By placing you as the NEXT OF KIN to his deposit. I will come over to your country as soon as the transfer is over to receive my own share of the fund for further investments by your advice.
The board of directors meeting in this bank are suggesting to transfer the total amount to our corresponded bank as unclaimed fund and put to government treasury hence no body has ever come for the claim for years now.
I contact you because I will not be happy to allow the fund mark as unclaimed fund because this is my opportunity to claim this fund because I know the rules and regulations of this bank am a top staff of this bank and i have all the information's needed to claim this fund.I need your urgent assistance to joined me so that this fund can be able to approve to you because as a citizen of this country I can not put a claim over the balance of our foreign customer because he is not a citizen of this country but a foreigner and the claim is only made for a foreign partner hence the decease person is a foreigner, that is why I need you as a foreign partner to stand on this transfer and as for me I will seat here to make sure that every thing about this transaction went very successfully.
I will give you more details of this transaction in all you will like to know about this business will be furnish to you as soon as I hear your urgent communication. Should you be interested in doing this deal with me,please send me the following information:
(1) Your Name
(2) Resident Address
(3) Your Occupation
(4) Your Phone Number
(5) Date of Birth
(6) Resident Country
I will provide you with further information as soon as I hear positively from you.
Mr Zainal Murad Falah